Student employees enrolled in academic programs at Central Washington University, Eastern Washington University, Western Washington University, and The Evergreen State College are exempt from the state civil service law. As a result, they do not have the right to collective bargaining under the Public Employees' Collective Bargaining Act (PECBA).
Legislation enacted in 2002 granted teaching assistants, research assistants, tutors, readers, graders, and similar student employees of the University of Washington (UW) the right to collective bargaining under PECBA. Legislation in 2008 added similar student employees at Washington State University (WSU) to PECBA.
The Legislature acknowledges that certain student employees at the UW and WSU have the right to collectively bargain, while similar student employees at Central Washington University, Eastern Washington University, Western Washington University, and The Evergreen State College (the institutions) do not. The Legislature intends to extend collective bargaining rights to certain student employees at the institutions to the same extent such rights are granted to student employees at the UW and WSU.
The Legislature recognizes the importance of the shared governance practices developed by the institutions and does not intend to restrict, limit, or prohibit:
The institutions are not restricted from considering the merits, necessity, or organization of any program, activity, or service established by the institution, including any decision to establish, modify, or discontinue any program, activity, or service. In addition, the institutions are not restricted from having sole discretion over admission requirements, degree-granting criteria, academic criterion for selecting employees, initial appointment of students, and the content, conduct, and supervision of courses, curricula, grading requirements, and research programs.
The Legislature does not intend to limit the matters excluded from collective bargaining to those items specified.
Covered employees are those who are enrolled in an academic program of one of the institutions and whose duties and responsibilities are substantially equivalent to:
Those employees constitute an appropriate bargaining unit at each individual institution.
Scope of Bargaining.
The following subjects are excluded from the scope of bargaining:
The compensation provisions in a collective bargaining agreement must not exceed the amount or percentage established by the Legislature; however, the employer may provide additional compensation that exceeds the amount provided by the Legislature. If any compensation provision is affected by subsequent modification of an appropriations act, the parties must bargain for a replacement provision.